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Opinion Letters Think outside the (big) box this year

Locally produced services can make great gifts

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide us monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods — merchandise that has been produced at the expense of our labor forces. This year will be different. This year, Americans will give the gift of genuine concern for each other at home. At gift giving time, there is no longer the old excuse, that nothing can be found produced at home by our own citizens.

Oh ... Yes, here is a list! Think outside the box, people! Who says a gift needs to fit in a shoe box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?

* Everyone — gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local hair salon or barber?

* Gym membership? It’s appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement!

* Who wouldn’t appreciate getting their car detailed? Small and locally owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.

* Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of buying a Chinese-made flat-screen TV? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.

* There are a lots of owner-run restaurants — all offering gift certificates. And, if your intend isn’t the fancy eatery sort, what about a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this isn’t about big National chains — this is about supporting your home town and its businesses with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open for you!

* How many people couldn’t use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the local working guy?

* Thinking about a heartfelt gift for Mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.

* My computer could use a tune-up, and I know I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.

* OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.

* Plan your holiday outings at a local, owner operated restaurants and leave your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre.

* Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands or concerts.

* Honestly! Do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? If you have lots of cash to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

* Christmas is no longer about draining our pockets, so that China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about US (We the People), encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams. And, when we care about our own citizens, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we could not imagine.

THIS is the new Christmas tradition!!

This is a revolution of caring about each other, and isn’t that what Christmas is about?

Submitted via email by Peggy Patterson


Christmas Gift Guide 2015

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